On Light Catchers and Other Things

I found the ensuing post in my drafts folder.  It was written in October 2017, just before I fell over my own feet and the legs of my easel and started the ball rolling on three months of ‘failure to stay upright’ events for myself and my family which you mostly know about and suffered through with us.

Now safely on the other side and having been uplifted by the wonderful community that gathers about this blog throughout, I want to share this news, aged as it is, with you and introduce you to some great folk, whom I do hope you will wander off to say hello to – tell them I sent you and you’ll be in like Flynn  😀

********************************

Some months back, deep in the heart of my winter, Susanne and I got into a bit of a discussion on her blog about patios and light catchers and weathering and as a result of that conversation I sent a light catcher off to Canada.   Susanne was going to hang it in her little summer garden and we were going to undertake an experiment, observing how the components behaved in an outdoor situation.   It never arrived.   Please do go here to read her beautifully written and wickedly funny piece on time and tides and missing light catchers and what eventually happened…………

While waiting to hear from Susanne – and expecting the worst – I made more light catchers.  This is the only one that made it into the gift shop.  It’s called ‘Summer Garden’ and I love the colour mix…….

hdr

The others were given away.  And eventually I even received a commission from Luanne to make a coral one – you read about that in the previous post.

Also included in the long forgotten draft was a little story about the inspiration for she who is variously known as YD or the Official Photographer or even by her own lovely name of Danella – the inspiration for her living-room do-up.  An event that some of you may recall from last year.   It’s important to still post this as I promised Derrick I would and life got terribly in the way of me keeping my promises for the past four months…….   

Any hoo – the inspiration came from a photograph my friend Derrick sent me of his beautiful garden.  (I say ‘his’, but the garden designer and curator is really his wife, the lovely Jackie, and Derrick’s role is, I am led to believe, chiefly that of flower dead-header and chief photographer and eater of lovingly prepared evening meals.)  I requested a copy of one particular shot that had captivated me and Derrick kindly and generously sent me three different prints.  At first sight of a particular one, YD’s eyes lit up and per-ping it was off to live at her place.  Here it is seen on the wall in this previously unrevealed view of her living room, taken from the sofa

Ds room 2

And a closer up shot, in case your eyes are as poor as mine……

Ds room detail

Which, on reflection, I see doesn’t help at all – the light being on as it was a dull morning when I requested the photo be taken STAT!  Any how,  that lovely pink and green photographic print was the inspiration for all this

Inky Wall 4

Which I’m sure you recall…….    Various comments about the state of depletion of the wine rack not withstanding, this lovely room has been almost entirely her only venue of residence since breaking her leg and fracturing her ankle on that unfortunate night at the end of last November.  And said wine rack has been variously refilled and emptied and refilled again  – so it’s just as well we had made it pretty for her.  All thanks to Jackie and Derrick’s fabulous garden inspiration at the Old Post House in the UK.  Please, allow  me to urge you to pop in and say hello to these two charmers, Jackie’s already begun planting up her spring garden and the first daffodil has shyly bloomed and Derrick has his camera ready to capture whatever comes next.

*****************************

Now we are back to the present day.  We’ve had a largish fire, whipped up by a violent wind that preceded the arrival of a weather conflagration that was somewhat alarming as a tropical storm moving south through the country met an elongated east-west weather system originating from Antarctica right over the South Island and dumped an extreme amount of water in a relatively small area over a 24 hour period…..  It put the fire out (yay!) and flooded the usual places (boo!) and cooled the air down (yay!).  It went from 35C to 16C in 36 hours.  So, this is the new look Summer here in the Riviera of Antarctica folks.

Now that it is summer here and winter there, my friends in Alberta, Canada and Virginia, USA and San Jose, USA are busy rifling through their wardrobes to find some appropriate clothing to pack into their suitcases …………..  Come prepared for anything I say!  Three weeks to go and we’ll have kicked off our little bloggers reunion gathering!

And that my friends is a very big “YAY!!”

Here’s Siddy, before the storm,  wondering what that delicious aroma is floating through the air, from somewhere not here ………..  Mmmmmm B-B-Q!

Siddy smells barbecue

Thanks for coming by today, I love that you did!

Sharing the Love

In my last post I shared the story of this, the ‘Dangler of International Happiness’

dangly10

Many comments focused on the extraordinary gifts that we receive from each other within our blogging communities.  Yes we receive all kinds of happy mail from fellow bloggers, gifts expected and unexpected.  Random Acts of Kindness that make a smile appear or maybe even a tear drop or two.  But even more precious is the friendship, understanding and positive support shared when times are hard, hearts are opened and just the smallest thoughtful word can make a big difference.

I have read posts that have questioned the reality of relationships made within the world of bloggers, claiming that we can invent ourselves to be quite other than we are, claiming that we can’t quite trust who or what is on the end of any comment, that we only present ourselves in our best possible light.

I disagree.

When over a period of time we read posts, comment and interact, the truth will out. Those who claim absolute positivity and living in the light may begin to grumble and blame.  Those who build themselves up as debonair and exciting, may soon become repetitious, egoistic and boring.  Those who interact simply to gain more followers for their own blog soon stop coming by and that is okay.  Those who claim no particular talent or ability may reveal a huge heart, a deeper philosophy, and a better – or alternative –  way.

In short we bloggers are not a stupid lot – we can see beneath any veneer, we can sift and sort, follow and unfollow.  Still, I agree on this one aspect.  We do mostly present the best of ourselves and that, it seems to me, is perfectly okay.  What a wonderful chance to celebrate our perfections rather than our imperfections.

I sure don’t want you all peering into my kitchen on any morning before I’ve had  my mug of steaming hot coffee and I’m pretty sure you don’t want me peering at you before you have finished your wake up/get up routine whatever it may be.  I’m all for let’s keep this as us at our best – or at least us at presentable!

morning_before_coffee

Most of the blogs I follow closely and interact with are blogs written by very real people, people with whom I may never stand in the same room and give a warm hug of greeting to, but still are people with whom I feel and experience a very real connection and sense of friendship.

Having said all that,  this is also a forum where we dare sometimes to show ourselves at less than our best.  There are times when life gets too much, life is hard and we are battered and bruised and in need of comfort.  This is us in the raw.  This is the stuff of real life.  And this allows us to be there for each other in a way that is uplifting and encouraging and often inspirational.

Writing posts about raw emotions or big life problems takes courage.  Reading through responses reveals the light that shines within a real, living community.  I know I have some readers who find posts of this ilk not okay – for their own very good reasons I am sure.  There’s a little part of me that is sad for them that they feel this way, but still I must, and do, respect their stance.  Those people do not interact on my blog when I write a more personal post.  And I see that I also choose not to interact with a blog when the topic or the over-arching feeling of a post doesn’t sit well with me.  We all have our boundaries.

But when a fellow blogger reveals they are upset, or ill or in emotional pain and we stay and read and allow ourselves to still the judgement and stay open and strive to feel empathy instead, when we offer words of understanding and support and even practical help if we can – then the blogging world becomes something other.  We create a global and spiritual reality that is based on empathy, understanding and love.  We wish to reach out, we say ‘I hear you’ in a hundred different ways and we offer support any way we can.

The world needs this, the earth needs this, we as human beings need this.  It counteracts the darkness of materialism and consumerism and corpocracy and greed. Those things get all the press.  But here we are doing the real work of being human.  And there are an awful lot of us!

This is my blogging experience, this is the community that has built around my blog and which I value more than I can say.  I have been the recipient of a great out-pouring of love and acceptance and pure delight over the past year or so and with this last delightful event still fresh in my mind I want to spread the love a bit more.

Here is what I am doing and I invite you to join in the fun and let’s see what we can make happen.

There are two Random Acts of Kindness going on, you can take part in one or other or both – or none if now is not the right time.  Whatever you decide is absolutely fine!

pizap.com14163775562791

RAK #1 The Road to Serendipity home to ‘two middle-aged, penniless hippies’ has recently finished enclosing their ‘Sanctuary’, a fenced and netted garden where Fran and Steve are growing their ‘futures’ from seeds and cuttings whilst fending off the advances of quolls and possums [and Earl] who are intent on eating or destroying everything as fast as they can.  My friend Dr Snail [The Snail of Happiness] and I have unilaterally decided that this garden requires BUNTING.  You get to make a piece [or more than one if you like] and Fran and Steve will find somewhere within their Sanctuary to string and hang it.  Just make sure there is a 4 cm  [11/2″ ] hem for threading the hanging rope through – and it would be good if it was sturdy, weather proof type material involved.  This is the first Fran and Steve will know about this dastardly plan – but we are quite sure they will love the opportunity to add into their sanctuary a myriad of brightly coloured, shimmering, waving fun infused bunting!

Your offering can be any shape, any size, any colour, any hardy outdoor fabric or recycled stuff.  Just make sure it has that threading venue available.

Fran also belatedly threw into the mix a request for beer bottle caps as she wishes to make a beer bottle cap dangler.  They can be used 🙂  That is such a cool Aussie idea!

bunting collage 2

RAK #2  Marlene at Insearchofitall is a senior citizen living with Bells Palsy, which means she cannot get out and about as much as she used to and she has days when her energy is low.   Despite this Marlene has recently moved into her new forever home and has been hard at work turning what might have been described as a pigs ear into a silk purse.  Marlene has a china cabinet and loves keepsakes.  I am going to [possibly make and] send Marlene a small New Zealand icon.  Would you care to [possibly make and] send her something that will represent you to her so that every time her eyes fall upon your gift, she thinks of you.   Wouldn’t that be the grandest thing!

icons7

I do so hope you will join with me and make this a most wonderful and joy filled giving event.

When you are ready to send I can pass on addresses to you, my details are in the ‘Contact Me’ page under Orlando’s beautiful picture.

Thanks for coming by today, I’m so happy that you did!